Italy: Violent storms cause flooding and millions of Euros of damage

Venice underwater, hailstones the size of tennis balls in Rome, flooding in Puglia and hundreds of yachts washed ashore in Liguria. Italy is suffering some serious storm damage this Autumn.

Published 5 years ago

Destroyed yachts and boats lie in the harbour of Rapallo, near Genoa, on October 30, 2018, after a storm hit the region and destroyed a part of the dam the night before – Marco Bertorello AFP

Venice underwater in the worst flood to hit the city in a decade. 

High winds created an exceptional tide in Venice on Monday, covering three-quarters of the city for the first time in a decade. Water levels were forecast Tuesday at 105 centimetres (41.3 inches), flooding 8 percent of the famed lagoon city.

“Geography of Venice is key to its storm-tide problem. It is nested within a lagoon at the far-northwest end of the Adriatic Sea,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Jim Andrews said. “Another factor is the air pressure difference between Venice and the southern end of the Adriatic Sea. Monday, this difference reached 0.44 to 0.59 inches of mercury (15 to 20 millibars), which is quite significant. This pressure difference tends to lift water at the north end of the Adriatic Sea (thus Venice), contributing to the lift caused by the ‘wind set’ (southeasterly onshore winds),” Andrews said.

Rains flooded highways and caused a landslide that forced the temporary closure of the Brenner highway connecting Italy with Austria, while the Adige River running through Verona rose by 2 meters (6 feet) but did not overflow. In the capital, Rome, more than 100 trees were felled by high winds, and ports reported damage from the storm, including to moored boats.

More unsettled weather is on the way for Venice and surrounding parts of Italy as a storm arrives from Thursday into Friday.

Business Insider photos of flooded Venice

Coastal apocalypse in the port of Rapallo in the northern region of Liguria

In the northern region of Liguria, more than 200 yachts were wrecked by a storm on Monday night, leaving millions worth in damage. The port of Rapallo was particularly badly affected with a large number of yachts (many superyachts) driven ashore and onto land by the 10m storm surge. The catastrophe started unravelling when the port’s dam collapsed due to the merciless weather.

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